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The Caves of Night

3.36  ·  Rating details ·  44 ratings  ·  6 reviews
Five people enter the Frohnberg caves, three men and two women. In the glare of the Austrian sunshine, the cool underground depths seem an attractive proposition – until the collapse of a cave wall blocks their return to the outside world. Faced with an unexplored warren of tunnels and caves, rivers and lakes, twisting and ramifying under the mountain range, they can only ...more
Mass Market Paperback
Published by Avon (first published 1958)
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Average rating 3.36  · 
Rating details
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Andrew
May 19, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Even though there were several annoying characters and a stupidly tragic Manfredesque Austrian count, I still give this book 5 stars (4.75, rounded up) because of its awesome suspense. It literally made me nauseous with its descriptions of claustrophobic caves and the whole buried alive stuff, but it was a real page-turner for me.
Most of the first third of the book was dumb, but once all the idiots get stuck in the terrifying caves, it kicked ass.
Joe Santoro
Oct 01, 2017 rated it it was ok
Shelves: thriller-caper
Apparently this slipped into the sci fi pile because the author does write sci fi. This one, however, despite the cover(which is definitely the best part) is not.

The 1st half documents the main character, a middle-aged woman named Cynthia, starting an affair with the Austrian Count in the neigborhood while her husband documents some cave paintings.

After that, we do get the cave part, in which the main characters get stuck, the red shirts die, and Cynthia gets left with a quite literal choice, wh
...more
Rebecca
I am only familiar with John Christopher's science fiction novels (which I have been actively seeking out), so The Caves of Night was a bit unexpected. Published in the 1950s, this contemporary realistic /adventure novel really seems to be of that post-war existential era. There is a couple in a meaningless marriage, a Graf restoring his war-damage home despite having no plans to continue the family line, a resort hotel in a war-impacted area, a man documenting a cave with no intentions of shari ...more
Peter
Jan 07, 2021 rated it liked it
Five people become trapped by a rock-fall in a cave in Austria in this melodramatic but still pretty suspenseful adventure from 1958. What complicates matters is that the wife of one, the experienced speleologist, has started an affair with the other, an Austrian, a POW just released by the Soviets, on whose property the cave is located. At the climax she has to decide who to save after they have worked their way through the underground caverns. An interesting examination of 1950s mores as well ...more
Agrippina
Sep 17, 2020 rated it liked it
Really well written, however, the synopsis on the back (and here on Goodreads) totally spoils the book as you know what is going to happen and spend the whole book waiting for it. This takes away all sense of shock, and also spoils the rest of the book as I just keep wondering when the big event was going to happen and probably rushed over everything else.
Ian Macfarlane
Nov 01, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Tense

Excellent,tense, a very good read right to the climax of the last chapter.Well worth reading. What more can I say.
Sara R.
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Sam Youd was born in Huyton, Lancashire in April 1922, during an unseasonable snowstorm.

As a boy, he was devoted to the newly emergent genre of science-fiction: ‘In the early thirties,’ he later wrote, ‘we knew just enough about the solar system for its possibilities to be a magnet to the imagination.’

Over the following decades, his imagination flowed from science-fiction into general novels, cric
...more

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